Ministry of the higher and secondary specialized education of the republic of uzbekistan



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Culture and Language


The power of language to reflect culture and influence thinking was first proposed by an American linguist and anthropologist, Edward Sapir (1884–1939), and his student, Benjamin Whorf (1897–1941). The Sapir–Whorf hypothesis stated that the way we think and view the world is determined by our language (Anderson & Lightfoot, 2002; Crystal, 1987; Hayes, Ornstein, & Gage, 1987). Instances of cultural language differences are evidenced in that some languages have specific words for concepts whereas other languages use several words to represent a specific concept. For example, the Arabic language includes many specific words for designating a certain type of horse or camel (Crystal, 1987). To make such distinctions in English, where specific words do not exist, adjectives would be used preceding the concept label, such as quarter horse or dray horse.

Cultural differences have also been noted in the ways in which language is used pragmatically. In our American culture, new skills are typically taught and learned through verbal instruction (Slobin, 1979). In some cultures, new skills are learned through nonverbal observation. A distinction has also been made between cultures that encourage independent learning and those that encourage cooperative learning (McLeod, 1994).

Differences in the social roles of adults and children also influence how language is used. Home and school contexts may represent different cultures, subcultures, or both and may influence language acquisition in noticeable ways. Nonverbal cues (e.g., facial expression) and contextual cues (e.g., shared experience) have different communicative roles in different cultures (Kaiser & Rasminsky, 2003). In some cultures, prelinguistic children (who are not yet verbalizing) are spoken about rather than spoken to (Heath, 1983). Children may be expected, and thus taught, to speak only when an adult addresses them. They are not encouraged to initiate conversations with adults or to join spontaneously in ongoing adult conversations. Additionally, in some cultures, children who enthusiastically volunteer answers at school are considered show-offs (Peregoy & Boyle, 1993). In some cultural settings, children are not asked recitational questions. Instead, they are asked only questions of clarification or for new information. Thus, when these children experience recitational questions in a school setting, they may be confused as to the purpose of the questioning and the expected response.

Further cultural differences in how language is used in educational settings have been documented by Tharp (1994). These differences include variations in how stories are told, the wait time given by teachers to students during questioning sequences, the rhythmic patterns of the verbal interactions, and the patterns of conversational turn-taking.

During the 1970s and 1980s, educators and linguists researched and debated the verbal-deficit perspective. This perspective contended that anyone who did not use standard English did not have a valid language and thus was verbally deficient. Although the verbal-deficit perspective has now been proven invalid, it is important to understand the research that was conducted to either support or discredit that perspective. Bernstein (1971), Bereiter and Englemann (1966), and Labov (1979) were among the researchers who studied language differences between different social groups, including middle- and lower-income groups and ethnic groups. This body of research identified specific differences in the way children from different socioeconomic and ethnic backgrounds used language in school and out-of-school settings. Implications of this research have been widely discussed and interpreted in a variety of ways.

Basil Bernstein (1971) documented the different linguistic codes used by children from lower- and middle-income families in England. Lower-income children were described as using a “restricted code” or highly contextualized language, while children from middle-income families used an “elaborated code,” or decontextualized language. His research also documented differences in school achievement for these two groups of children. Interpretations of Bernstein’s work concluded a cause–effect relation between language use and school success, supporting a “verbal deficit” perspective: the working-class environment of the low-income children created a verbal deficiency responsible for subsequent low educational achievement (Winch, 1990).

Here in the United States, Bereiter and Englemann (1966) conducted further research from the verbal-deficit perspective. They focused on the language of preschool African American children in Urbana, Illinois. Bereiter and Engleman concluded that the language used by African American children was not a valid language and thus recommended that these children needed to be taught English in the school setting (Winch, 1990). Academically oriented preschool curricula were developed (e.g., Blank, Rose, & Berlin, 1978) to provide the needed English language training for verbally deficient children.

William Labov (1979; Winch, 1990) explored social dialects of lower income African American children in urban settings. He studied the differences in children’s in-school and out-of-school (e.g., playground) language competencies. His data directly challenged the verbal-deficit theory because it documented the elaborated and systematic linguistic properties of Black English. His research supported the idea that Black English was a separate language system with its own grammar and rules. Labov described dialects as having “slightly different versions of the same rules, extending and modifying the grammatical processes which are common to all dialects of English” (Labov, 1995, p. 54). Labov’s research supported the idea that verbal differences are not verbal deficits. Because Labov’s research focused on language used in academic and nonschool settings, he also created a greater awareness of the role of context and dialect in communication.

Tough (1977) conducted a longitudinal study of children from advantaged (college-educated, professional parents) and disadvantaged (parents who were in unskilled or semiskilled occupations) homes. The study began when the children were 3 years old, with follow-up at 5 1⁄2 and 7 1⁄2 years. At age 3, the disadvantaged children and the advantaged children showed significant differences in the ways they used language. Specifically, the disadvantaged children did not use language to recall and give details of prior experiences, anticipate upcoming events and possible outcomes, reason about current and remembered events, problem solve using language for planning and considering alternatives, reach solutions, create and sustain dramatic play events, and understand others’ experiences and feelings. When these children were studied again at 5 1⁄2 and 7 1⁄2 years, the disadvantaged children produced shorter, less complex responses. This research contributed to our understanding that children from different cultural environments may be learning to use language differently and may experience difficulty in participating in the language environment in classrooms.

Further awareness of the role of cultural environments in the acquisition of language was influenced in the 1980s by ethnographic research techniques that were used by language researchers. Ethnographic studies have contributed significantly to our understanding of linguistic diversity. Ethnography uses participant observation in real-life settings and focuses on individuals within their social and cultural contexts. In her ethnographic study, Heath (1983) explored children’s acquisition of language at home and school in two communities in the southeastern United States. She found differences in communication in working-class black and white families as well as among middle-class townspeople of both ethnic groups.

Heath also described differences in story structures, language, and sense of “truth” (fiction vs. nonfiction) that children learned at home that were different from those expected at school. To be successful at school, these children had to be able “to recognize when a story is expected to be true, when to stick to the facts, and when to use their imaginations” (Heath, 1983, p. 294).

Heath’s research also documented valid and authentic differences in the ways language is used and in the ways in which children in those respective communities become competent language users. Heath concluded that the contrasts she found in language were not based on race, but on complex cultural influences in each community.

The importance of family context in language acquisition was more recently described by Hart and Risley (1995, 1999). Findings from their longitudinal study document the significance of “talkativeness” in families in influencing language acquisition rather than the family’s socioeconomic status or ethnic group identity. Differences in language use were attributed to the complex family culture—not simply due to socioeconomic status or ethnic group identity. Among the families that were studied, the most important difference was in the amount of talking. Children in families where there was more talking developed higher levels of language in the areas of vocabulary growth and vocabulary use. These differences were strongly linked to school performance at age 9.

Among these families, Hart and Risley (1995) identified five quality features in parents’ language interactions with their children:



  1. Language diversity: the variation and amount of nouns and modifiers used by the parents

  2. Feedback tone: the positive feedback given to children’s participation in the interaction

  3. Symbolic emphasis: the emphasis placed on focusing on names and associated relations of the concepts and the recall of those symbols

  4. Guidance style: parental interaction that used asking rather than demanding in eliciting specific behavior from the child

  5. Responsiveness: parental responsiveness to requests or questions initiated by children

Hart and Risley (1995) speculated that these categories may be “important for the language-based analytic and symbolic competencies upon which advanced education and a global economy depend” (p. 193).

A current hypothesis on why children from diverse linguistic backgrounds experience difficulty in school is the socialization mismatch hypothesis. This hypothesis “predicts that children are more likely to succeed in school when the home language and literacy socialization patterns are similar to those that are used and valued in school” (Faltis, 1998, p. 23). This hypothesis has been applied to children who speak a nonstandard English dialect as well as to children who are learning a second language. Home language socialization patterns may differ from those favored in the school classroom in the following ways (Faltis, 1998):



  1. The amount of talk directed to preschool children

  2. The participation of young children as conversation partners with adults

  3. Opportunities children have to explain or give a personal interpretation of events

  4. The types of questions asked of children during storybook sharing

  5. The forms of narrative that are used (e.g., fiction, nonfiction, or ongoing narratives)

In addition, the social interaction patterns used in the classroom may vary from the home culture’s with respect to expectations for competitive versus collaborative or cooperative activities as well as the “courtesies and conventions of conversations” (Tharp, 1994, p. 140).

1.5. The Implication of Culture on Translation Theory and Practice

Language is an expression of culture and individuality of its speakers. It


influences the way the speakers perceive the world. This principle has a far-
reaching implication fro translation. If language influences thought and culture, it
means that ultimate translation is impossible. The opposite point of view, however,
gives another perspective. Humboldt's "inner" and "outer" forms in language and
Chomsky's "deep" and "surface" structures imply that ultimate translation is
anyhow possible.

In practice, however, the possibility depends on the purpose and how deep


the source text is embedded in the culture. The more source-text-oriented a
translation is, the more difficult it is to do. Similarly, the deeper a text is embedded
in its culture, the more difficult it is to work on.

Related to translation, culture manifests in two ways. First, the concept or


reference of the vocabulary items is somehow specific for the given culture.
Second, the concept or reference is actually general but expressed in a way specific
to the source language culture. In practice, however, it is suggested that a translator
should take into account the purpose of the translation in translating the culturally-
bound words or expressions. The translation procedures discussed should also be
considered.

Cultural Consideration in Translation. It has been long taken for granted that


translation deals only with language. Cultural perspective, however, has never been
brought into discussion. This can be seen in most of the following definitions.

The first definition is presented by Catford. He states that translation is the


replacement of textual material in one language by equivalent textual material in
another language. In this definition, the most important thing is equivalent textual
material. Yet, it is still vague in terms of the type of equivalence. Culture is not
taken into account.

Very much similar to this definition is that by Savory who maintains that


translation is made possible by an equivalent of thought that lies behind its
different verbal expressions.

Next, Nida and Taber explain the process of translating as follows.


Translating consists of reproducing in the receptor language the closest natural
equivalent of the source language message, first in terms of meaning and secondly
in terms of style.

In Translation: Applications and Research, Brislin defines translation as:

"the general term referring to the transfer of thoughts and ideas from one
language (source) to another (target), whether the languages are in written or oral
form; whether the languages have established orthographies or do not have such
standardization or whether one or both languages is based on signs, as with sign
languages of the deaf."

Identical with the above definition is the one proposed by Pinhhuck (1977:


38). He maintains that "Translation is a process of finding a TL equivalent for an
SL utterance".

In the definitions appearing in 1960s-1970s, some similarities have been


found: (1) there is a change of expression from one language to the other, (2) the
meaning and message are rendered in the TL, and (3) the translator has an
obligation to seek for the closest equivalent in the TL. Yet, there is no indication
that culture is taken into account except in that of Nida and Taber.

Actually Nida and Taber themselves do not mention this matter very


explicitly. Following their explanation on "closest natural equivalent", however,
we can infer that cultural consideration is considered. They maintain that the
equivalent sought after in every effort of translating is the one that is so close that
the meaning/message can be transferred well.

The concept of closest natural equivalent is rooted in Nida's concept of


dynamic equivalent. His celebrated example is taken from the Bible, that is the
translation of "Lamb of God" into the Eskimo language. Here "lamb" symbolizes
innocence, especially in the context of sacrifice. As a matter of fact, Eskimo
culture does not know "lamb". Thus, the word does not symbolize anything.
Instead of "Lamb of God", he prefers "Seal of God" to transfer the message. Here
he considers cultural aspects.

The inclusion of cultural perspective in the definition of translation


unfortunately does not continue. The later ones keep on not touching this matter.
See the following definition.

"Translation involves the rendering of a source language (SL) text into the


target language (TL) so as to ensure that (1) the surface meaning of the two will be
approximately similar and (2) the structure of the SL will be preserved as closely
as possible, but not so closely that the TL structure will be seriously distorted
(McGuire, 1980: 2).

In the following definition, Newmark does not state anything about culture.

"Translation is a craft consisting in the attempt to replace a written message
and/or statement in one language by the same message and/or statement in another
language" (Newmark, 1981: 7).

Finally, Wills defines translation more or less similarly as follows.

"Translation is a transfer process which aims at the transformation of a
written SL text into an optimally equivalent TL text, and which requires the
syntactic, the semantic and the pragmatic understanding and analytical processing
of the SL" (Wills inNoss, 1982: 3).

It is known that out of 8 definitions above only one takes cultural aspects


into account, the one by Nida and Taber. This definition is actually a specific one, rooted from the practice of the Bible translation. By nature, it is understood that the
translation should be done to eveiy language. As the content addresses all walks of
life and culture plays an important role in human life, culture, therefore, should be
considered.

The other definitions, however, are meant to explain the experts' view on


translation theory to be applied in the translation of all types of material, including
scientific or technical texts which are not deeply embedded in any culture. Thus, it
can be momentarily hypothesized that cultural consideration must be taken if the
material to translate is related to culture. For material that is not very much
embedded into a specific culture, cultural consideration may not be necessary.

According to Snell-Hornby (1988: 39), however, this exclusion of cultural


aspect from the discussion of translation theory is due to the view of the traditional
approach in linguistics which draws a sharp dividing-line between language and
"extralinguistic reality" (culture, situation, etc.). The contemporary approach,
according to her, sees language as an integral part of culture. This view can be seen
in Hymes (1964) and Halliday and Hasan (1985), for example.

Language and Culture. Culture in this discussion should be seen in a broad


sense, as in anthropological studies. Culture is not only understood as the advanced
intellectual development of mankind as reflected in the arts, but it refers to all
socially conditioned aspects of human life (cf. Snell-Hornby, 1988: Hymes). In
practical wordings, Good enough puts:

"As I see it, a society's culture consists of whatever it is one has to know or


believe in order to operate in a manner acceptable to its members, and do so in any
role that they accept for any one of themselves. Culture, being what people have to
learn as distinct from their biological heritage, must consist of the end product of
learning: knowledge, in a most general, if relative, sense of the term. By definition,
we should note that culture is not material phenomenon; it does not consist of
things, people, behavior, or emotions. It is rather an organization of these things. It is the forms of things that people have in mind, their models of perceiving and
dealing with their circumstances. To one who knows their culture, these things and
events are also signs signifying the cultural forms or models of which they are
material representation."

It can be summarized that this definition suggests three things: (a) culture


seen as a totality of knowledge and model for perceiving things, (b) immediate
connection between culture and behavior and events, and (c) culture's dependence
on norms. It should be noted also that some other definitions claim that both
knowledge and material things are parts of culture. See, for example,
Koentjaraningrat (1996: 80-81) and Hoijer.

According to Snell-Hornby (1988: 40), the connection between language


and culture was first formally formulated by Wilhelm Von Humboldt. For this
German philosopher, language was something dynamic: it was an activity (energia)
rather than a static inventory of items as the product of activity (ergon). At the
same time language is an expression of culture and individuality of the speakers,
who perceive the world through language. Related to Goodenough's idea on culture
as the totality of knowledge, this present idea may see language as the knowledge
representation in the mind.

In 1973, Humboldt's view was echoed by Edward Sapir and Benjamin Lee


Whorf in their Sapir-Whorf hypothesis. This principle states that thought does not
"precede" language, but on the contrary thought is conditioned by it. The system of
honorific style used in Javanese, for example, affects the speakers' concepts of
social status.

Halliday (in Halliday and Hasan (1985: 5) states that there was the theory of


context before the theory of text. In other words, context precedes text. Context
here means context of situation and culture (Halliday and Hasan, 1985: 7). This
context is necessary for adequate understanding of the text, which becomes the
first requirement for translating. Thus, translating without understanding text is non-sense, and understanding text without understanding its culture is impossible.

Humboldt's idea, Sapir-Whorf hypothesis, and Halliday's idea have a far-


reaching implications for translation. In its extreme, the notion that language
conditions thought and that language and thought is bound up with the individual
culture of the given community would mean that translation is impossible. We
cannot translate one's thought which is affected by and stated in language specific
for a certain community to another different language because the system of
thought in the two languages (cultures) must be different. Each language is unique.
If it influences the thought and, therefore, the culture, it would mean that ultimate
translation is impossible.

Another point of view, however, asserts the opposite. Ironically this also


goes back to Humboldt's idea bout inner and outer forms of language. Later it is
developed into the concepts of deep structure and surface structure by Chomsky.
Inner form and deep structure is what generally known as idea. Following this
concepts, all ideas are universal. What is different is only the surface structure, the
outer from. If it is so, translation is only a change of surface structure to represent
the universal deep structure. Accordingly, translation is theoretically always
possible.

All in all, we are faced with two extremes. Which one is right? The answer,


according to Snell-Hornby (1988: 41) lies not in choosing any of the two. If the
extremes are put at the ends of a cline, the answer lies between the two. In brief,
theoretically the degree of probability for perfect translation depends on how far
the source language text (SLT) is embedded in its culture and the greater the
distance between the culture between SLT and target language text (TLT), the
higher is the degree of impossibility. See the following excerpts for illustration.
The source language (SL) is English and the target language (TL) is Uzbek.

(1.) TL: A research institution conducted a research on the amount of saving


deposited by workers of a company located in a capital city. The research took 100
family as a sample and the result was presented in percentage of their monthly
wages.

SL: Пойтахтда жойлашган бир компаниянинг ишчилари томонидан


жамгарилган пул маблагларини илмий-изланиш институти тадкик этди.

(2) TL: In a Javanese community, based on traditions, a pregnant woman or


wife should be celebrated with various kinds traditional fiest. These should be
done so that she can give a birth to a child easily and safely and the newly-born
will get happy life later.

SL: Жаваниз жамиятида анъанага асосан огир оёк хотин тантана


килиши керак. Бунинг килинишининг сабаби болани осонгина дунёга
келтириш ва чакалок кейинчалик бахтли хаёт кечиради.

Reading the texts, we can imagine that translating the first text is easier than


the second, and the second is easier than the last. The difficulty is caused by the
culturally-bound words (concepts) found in each text.

Practically, however, the depth of embededness of a text into its culture is


not the first consideration. The purpose of translating is the first determinant. If the
purpose of translating text (2), for example, is to give general introduction of a
certain type of text or culture, the TL should not carry all the meaning possessed
by the SLT. The words underlined and put in the brackets will do. In this case there
are a lot of possibilities for the TL.

However, if the purpose is to present the Javanese culture before the English


readership, the italicized words should be used and accompanied with a lot of
explanation. Supposed the two paragraphs are parts of a novel, and the translator
wants to keep the local color, only the italicized words should be used. These
different purposes govern the choice of translation procedures. Yet, if the purpose of translating text (2) and (3) is to present all the meaning, beauty, and style
contained in it, then, translation is impossible.

Translation Procedures to Translate Culturally-bound Words or Expressions.


From the previous discussion, it is known that perfect translation of culturally-
bound text is impossible. The translation focusing on the purpose of the SL text
writing is, however, always possible. This can be proven with the translation of so
many literary works into other languages. One of them is the translation of O.
Wild's "The picture of Dorian Grey" into Uzbek by Ozod Sharafuddinov. O.
Sharafuddinov surveys both groups of SL and TL readers and comes up with the
result saying that the readers get the same impressions in terms of the meaning,
message and style.

Based on the result, O. Sharafuddinov (1999) studied further the appropriate


procedures used to translate culturally-bound sentences, words, and expressions
which are embedded in Javanese culture into English using the same novel
translation as a case. The result shows that to translate culturally-bound words or
expressions, the translator used addition, componential analysis, cultural
equivalent, descriptive equivalent, literal translation, modulation, recognized
translation, reduction, synonymy, transference, deletion,
and combination. Some,
however, are typically appropriate for certain classification of cultural words. For
detailed description about the translation procedures, see Newmark (1988).

On the appropriateness of the procedures to translate culturally-bound words


and expressions, these conclusions are taken.

Recognized translation is best used to translate institutional terms whose
translation are already recognized. The use of new translation with whatever
procedure will make the readers may misinterpret, especially if they already have
some degree of knowledge of the source language. The establishment of this
recognized translation by Language Center or the people themselves has, of course,
undergone a certain process of creation and acceptance. When something about language has been accepted, it means it is a convention: that is the heart of
language or vocabulary.

The SL words

The translation




nursemaids

Энага




privates

Шахсий таркиб




bellhop

Югурдак




corporals or privates

Капрал ва шахсий таркиб




maid servants

Аёл хизматкорлар




servant

хизматкор




rice thieves

Гуруч угрилари




tailor

тикувчи




air force fighter

Хаво хужуми аскари




gardener

Богбон




thieves and robbers

Угрилар ва каззоблар




village chief

Кишлок раиси




servant

Хизматчи




clerk

Иш юритувчи




the waterworks overseer

Денгиз ортида денгизда ишлаш

Professions are appropriately translated with cultural equivalents as they
exist in both Javanese and English cultures. There are some differences between
the two, but they are so minute. The examples can be seen in the following
quotations. The other professions and the translation found in the novel are the
following. Next, modulation can be used best to handle a word that has no exact equivalent in the TL and the context demands the translator to emphasize the economy and smoothness of the sentence flow. This situation usually happens in a direct quotation where cultural notes are impossible. In addition, with this procedure the translator can still recreate the smooth flow and beauty of the text.

Finally, there are some culturally-bound words deleted or dropped during the


translation process. The translator seems to take this strategy if the word's meaning
is not found in the TL culture and the importance is minor. Anyhow, he should try
to transfer to meaning or message, especially if it is not merely terms of address.

Conclusion to Chapter I

The qualification paper under the name "Cultural words and their Translation" discussed the problem of translation of cultural terms into Uzbek.

Our aim was to show the difference and peculiarities of cultural terms. The actuality of the theme was doubtless motivated us to learn cultural terms as a subject in informational world.

Normally a translator can treat cultural terms more freely than institutional terms. He is not called to account for faulty decisions, whether he is translating imaginative literature or general works (e.g. History). Since little can be explained to the spectator, cultural terms are rather more likely to be translated or given a cultural equivalent in a play than in fiction. But generally the most favored procedure for a recently noted term peculiar to a foreign culture (given national pride, greater interests in other countries, increased communications, etc.) is likely to be transcription. Coupled with discreet explanation within the text. If the term becomes widespread it may be adopted in the TL.

The usage of a componential analyses in translating cultural words that the leadership is unlikely to understand: whether they accompanied by an accepted translation (which must be used in all but most informal texts), transference, functional equivalent and so on will depend, firstly on the particular text-type; secondly, on the requirements of the leaderships or the client, who may also disregard the usually characteristics of the text-type; and thirdly, on the importance the cultural words in the text

Thus the analyses showed that in the course of translation it should be more careful with the translation of cultural terms.



Chapter II. Lingo-cultural approach to translation in “Boburnoma”

2.1.The Categories of Cultural words in Linguistics

In 1988 Newmark defined culture as "the way of life and its manifestations that are peculiar to a community that uses a particular language as its means of expression", thus acknowledging that each language group has its own culturally specific features. He also introduced ‘Cultural word’ which the readership is unlikely to understand and the translation strategies for this kind of concept depend on the particular text-type, requirements of the readership and client and importance of the cultural word in the text.

Peter Newmark also categorized the cultural words as follows:

1) Ecology: flora, fauna, hills, winds, plains

2) Material Culture: food, clothes, houses and towns, transport

3) Social Culture: work and leisure

4) Organizations Customs, Activities, Procedures,

5) Concepts:

• Political and administrative

• Religious

• artistic

6) Gestures and Habits

He introduced contextual factors for translation process which include:


  1. Purpose of text 

  2. Motivation and cultural, technical and linguistic level of readership

  3. Importance of referent in SL text

  4. Setting (does recognized translation exist?)

  5. Recency of word/referent

  6. Future or refrent.

He further clearly stated that operationally he does not regard language as a component or feature of culture in direct opposition to the view taken by Vermeer who stated that "language is part of a culture" (1989:222). According to Newmark, Vermeer's stance would imply the impossibility to translate whereas for the latter, translating the source language (SL) into a suitable form of TL is part of the translator's role in transcultural communication.

Language and culture may thus be seen as being closely related and both aspects must be considered for translation. When considering the translation of cultural words and notions, Newmark proposed two opposing methods: transference and componential analysis. According to him transference gives "local colour," keeping cultural names and concepts. Although placing the emphasis on culture, meaningful to initiated readers, he claimed this method may cause problems for the general readership and limit the comprehension of certain aspects. The importance of the translation process in communication led Newmark to propose componential analysis which he described as being "the most accurate translation procedure, which excludes the culture and highlights the message".

Newmark also stated the relevance of componential analysis in translation as a flexible but orderly method of bridging the numerous lexical gaps, both linguistic and cultural, between one language and another:

cultural translation

 Some strategies introduced by Newmark for dealing with cultural gap:



  1. Naturalization:

  2. A strategy when a SL word is transferred into TL text in its original form.

2) Couplet or triplet and quadruplet: Is another technique the translator adopts at the time of transferring, naturalizing or calques to avoid any misunderstanding: according to him it is a number of strategies combine together to handle one problem.

3) Neutralization: Neutralization is a kind of paraphrase at the level of word. If it is at higher level it would be a paraphrase. When the SL item is generalized (neutralized) it is paraphrased with some culture free words.

4) Descriptive and functional equivalent:In explanation of source language cultural item there is two elements: one is descriptive and another one would be functional. Descriptive equivalent talks about size, color and composition. The functional equivalent talks about the purpose of the SL cultural-specific word.

5) Explanation as footnote:The translator may wish to give extra information to the TL reader. He would explain this extra information in a footnote. It may come at the bottom of the page, at the end of chapter or at the end of the book.

6) Cultural equivalent:The SL cultural word is translated by TL cultural word

7) Compensation:A technique which is used when confronting a loss of meaning, sound effect, pragmatic effect or metaphor in one part of a text. The word or concept is compensated in other part of the text.

In 1992, Lawrence Venuti mentioned the effective powers controlling translation. He believed that in addition to governments and other politically motivated institutions which may decide to censor or promote certain works, there are groups and social institutions which would include various players in the publication as a whole. These are the publishers and editors who choose the works and commission the translations, pay the translators and often dictate the translation method. They also include the literary agents, marketing and sales teams and reviewers. Each of theses players has a particular position and role within the dominant cultural and political agenda of their time and place. Power play is an important theme for cultural commentators and translation scholars. In both theory and practice of translation, power resides in the deployment of language as an ideological weapon for excluding or including a reader, a value system, a set of beliefs, or even an entire culture.

In 1992, Mona Baker stated that S.L word may express a concept which is totally unknown in the target culture. It can be abstract or concrete. It maybe a religious belief, a social custom or even a type of food. In her book, In Other Words, she argued about the common non-equivalents to which a translator come across while translating from SL into TL, while both languages have their distinguished specific culture. She put them in the following order:

a) Culture specific concepts

b) The SL concept which is not lexicalized in TL

c) The SL word which is semantically complex

d) The source and target languages make different distinction in meaning


e) The TL lacks a super ordinate

f) The TL lacks a specific term (hyponym)

g) Differences in physical or interpersonal perspective

h) Differences in expressive meaning

i) Differences in form

j) Differences in frequency and purpose of using specific forms


k) The use of loan words in the source text

Mona Baker also believed that it is necessary for translator to have knowledge about semantics and lexical sets. Because in this case: S/he would appreciate the “value” of the word in a given system knowledge and the difference of structures in SL and TL. This allows him to assess the value of a given item in a lexical set.


S/he can develop strategies for dealing with non-equivalence semantic field. These techniques are arranged hierarchically from general (superordinate) to specific (hyponym).

In 1992, Coulthard highlightd the importance of defining the ideal reader for whom the author attributes knowledge of certain facts, memory of certain experiences ... plus certain opinions, preferences and prejudices and a certain level of linguistic competence. When considering such aspects, the extent to which the author may be influenced by such notions which depend on his own sense of belonging to a specific socio-cultural group should not be forgotten.

Coulthard stated that once the ideal ST readership has been determined, considerations must be made concerning the TT. He said that the translator's first and major difficulty is the construction of a new ideal reader who, even if he has the same academic, professional and intellectual level as the original reader, will have significantly different textual expectations and cultural knowledge.

In the case of the extract translated here, it is debatable whether the ideal TT reader has "significantly different textual expectations," however his cultural knowledge will almost certainly vary considerably.

Applied to the criteria used to determine the ideal ST reader it may be noted that few conditions are successfully met by the potential ideal TT reader. Indeed, the historical and cultural facts are unlikely to be known in detail along with the specific cultural situations described. Furthermore, despite considering the level of linguistic competence to be roughly equal for the ST and TT reader, certain differences may possibly be noted in response to the use of culturally specific lexis which must be considered when translating.  Although certain opinions, preferences and prejudices may be instinctively transposed by the TT reader who may liken them to his own experience, it must be remembered that these do not match the social situation experience of the ST reader. Therefore, Coulthard mainly stated that the core social and cultural aspects remain problematic when considering the cultural implications for translation.

SL writer would not mention them if he does not attach importance to them.



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